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Resigning US lawmaker in parting shot at Trump

Friday November 1 2019

 US congresswoman Katie Hill

Democrat Katie Hill speaks at a past campaign rally. PHOTO | MARK RALSTON | AFP 

AFP
By AFP
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WASHINGTON,

A US congresswoman who resigned amid lurid revelations about her private life and the publication of nude photos without her consent on Thursday used her final vote in office to accuse President Donald Trump of "abuse of power over women."

"Today, as my last vote, I voted on impeachment proceedings... because of the deepest abuse of power, including the abuse of power over women," said Katie Hill in her final speech to Congress.

Hill, who had been seen as a rising star in the Democratic Party, said Sunday she was stepping down after accusations that she had a sexual relationship with a subordinate in violation of House ethics rules.

ETHICAL VIOLATION

The California lawmaker denied that accusation but did admit that she and her husband -- whom she is now divorcing -- engaged in a three-way sexual relationship with a female campaign staffer.

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This relationship would not fall under House ethics rules, as it occurred before Hill took office.

But the House Committee on Ethics announced Wednesday that it was investigating allegations the 32-year-old lawmaker, who is openly bisexual, may have had a sexual relationship with a congressional staffer since arriving in Washington.

"I'm leaving because of a misogynistic culture that gleefully consumed my naked pictures and enabled my abusive ex to continue that abuse," Hill told Congress on Thursday.

SCATHING ATTACK

"I'm leaving. But we have men who have been credibly accused of intentional acts of sexual violence and remain in boardrooms, on the Supreme Court, in this very body, and worst of all, in the Oval Office," Hill said before launching into a scathing condemnation of the president.

Trump is "a man who brags about his sexual predation, who's had dozens of women come forward to accuse him of sexual assault, who pushes policies that are uniquely harmful to women," Hill continued.

"And he has filled the courts with judges who proudly rule to deprive women of the most fundamental rights to control their own bodies."

"I voted to move forward with the impeachment of Donald Trump, on behalf of the women of the United States of America," Hill concluded.

The House of Representatives, which has a Democratic majority, laid out a formal roadmap Thursday for Trump's impeachment, as they accumulated more evidence to support charges that he improperly pushed Ukraine to boost his own 2020 electoral prospects.